JASDF Primary Air Unit Order of Battle
(As at February 1, 2017)
(All photographs on this website are copyright J-HangarSpace
unless otherwise stated.)
AIR DEFENSE COMMAND (HQ: Yokota, Tokyo)
|Northern Air Defense Force (Misawa, Aomori)|
|2nd Air Wing||201st TFS||F-15J/DJ, T-4||Chitose, Hokkaido|
|3rd Air Wing||3rd TFS||F-2A/B, T-4||Misawa, Aomori|
|Northern Air Command Support Flt||T-4|
|Central Air Defense Force (Iruma, Saitama)|
|6th Air Wing||303rd TFS||F-15J/DJ, T-4||Komatsu, Ishikawa|
|7th Air Wing||301st TFS||F-4EJKai , T-4||Hyakuri, Ibaraki|
|Central Air Command Support Squadron||T-4, U-4||Iruma|
(Above) The pilot of a 305th TFS F-15DJ Eagle watches as his canopy closes over him. Each F-15J unit maintains on strength examples of the two-seat version of the Eagle and the Kawasaki T-4 (below) for training purposes.
The Headquarters Support Flight that reported directly to Air Defense Command was renamed and placed under local regional control in 2014. (Above) A U-4 from what is now the Central Air Command Support Squadron basks in the sun on the apron at Iruma AB.
(Below) One of the same unit’s pristine T-4s at rest in an equally well-maintained hangar.
|Western Air Defense Force (Kasuga, Fukuoka)|
|5th Air Wing||305th TFS||F-15J/DJ, T-4||Nyutabaru, Miyazaki|
|8th Air Wing||6th TFS||F-2A/B, T-4||Tsuiki, Fukuoka|
|Western Air Command Support Sqn||T-4||Kasuga|
An F-4EJKai Phantom from the 301st TFS that shared Nyutabaru AB with the Tactical Fighter
Training Group’s Aggressor Squadron before moving to Hyakuri in October 2016. Under plans
announced in December 2013, the JASDF is to increase the number of its fighter units from 12
to 13 squadrons and accept delivery of 28 Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning IIs by 2018.
For many years home to the F-15J Eagles of the 304th TFS (above) and the F-2A/B-equipped 6th TFS, Tsuiki AB is scenically situated on the coast of Fukuoka Prefecture.
The 304th relocated to Naha AB in January 2016.
| Southwestern Composite Air Division (Naha, Okinawa)
(To be renamed as Southwestern Air Defense Force in 2017)
|9th Air Wing
(formed from 83rd AW
Jan. 31, 2016)
|204th Sqn||F-15J/DJ, T-4||Naha|
|Southwestern Support Flt||T-4|
As is customary, the crew chief of a 204th Sqn F-15J salutes as his charge moves off the flight line.
UNITS REPORTING DIRECT TO AIR DEFENSE COMMAND
|Airborne Early Warning & Control Group||Tactical Reconnaissance Group|
|Air Tactics Development Wing||Air Rescue Wing|
The Air Tactics Development Wing formed in August 2014.
The Air Rescue Wing passed to Air Defense Command control from Air Support
Command on March 26, 2013.
|Airborne Early Warning (AEW) Control Group (Hamamatsu, Shizuoka)|
|AEW Surveillance Group (Misawa, Aomori)|
|601st Sqn||E-2C||Misawa, Aomori|
|603rd Sqn||E-2C||Naha, Okinawa|
|602nd Sqn (reports direct to AEW Control Group)||E-767||Hamamatsu, Shizuoka|
One of the then AEW Surveillance Squadron’s E-2C Hawkeyes was painted in special markings to commemorate the milestone of 100,000 accident-free flight hours attained on July 30, 2009. This
aircraft was one of four E-2Cs assigned to the JASDF’s newest unit, the 603rd Sqn that formed at
Naha AB on April 20, 2014.
|Tactical Reconnaissance Group (Hyakuri, Ibaraki)|
|501st Reconnaissance Sqn||RF-4E/RF-4EJ, T-4||Hyakuri|
One of seven aircraft modified from F-4EJ standard, 501st Reconnaissance Squadron RF-4EJKai
77-6392 undergoes flight line maintenance. A TACER reconnaissance pod capable of providing
real-time imagery is attached to the aircraft’s centreline station.
|Air Tactics Development Wing (Yokota, Tokyo)|
|Tactical Fighter Training Group
|F-15J/DJ, T-4||Komatsu, Ishikawa*|
|Electronic Warfare Squadron**||EC-1, YS-11EA||Iruma, Saitama|
|Electronic Intelligence Squadron**||YS-11EB|
| (*) Move from Nyutabaru to Komatsu completed June 2016
(**) Both squadrons report to the Electronic Tactics Group at Iruma
Although taken against the evening sun, this photo does serve to show the changes in the 21st
Kawasaki C-1’s external appearance for its role as the Electronic Warfare Squadron’s sole EC-1.
The salient feature is its bulbous nose radome that houses J/ALQ-5 jamming equipment.
Parked at Iruma next to the EC-1, these three YS-11s were converted from standard transport aircraft to perform specific electronic-related tasks. The two nearest the camera are YS-11EA electronic countermeasures training aircraft. Well hidden at the back is a YS-11EB variant
used for electronic intelligence-gathering duties.
|Air Rescue Wing (HQ: Iruma) Detachments (All equipped with U-125A, UH-60J)|
|Chitose, Hokkaido||Matsushima, Miyagi||Ashiya, Fukuoka|
|Akita, Akita||Hyakuri, Ibaraki||Nyutabaru, Miyazaki|
|Niigata, Niigata||Hamamatsu, Shizuoka||Naha, Okinawa|
|Komatsu, Ishikawa||Komaki, Aichi (Training Sqn)|
|Helicopter Air Transport Squadrons**
(All equipped with CH-47J)
|Misawa, Aomori||Kasuga, Fukuoka|
|Iruma, Saitama||Naha, Okinawa|
|(**) Formerly came under Air Support Command control|
AIR SUPPORT COMMAND (HQ: Fuchu, Tokyo)
1st Tactical Airlift Group
|401st Sqn||C-130H/KC-130H||Komaki, Aichi|
2nd Tactical Airlift Group
|402nd Sqn||C-1, U-4||Iruma, Saitama|
3rd Tactical Airlift Group
|403rd Sqn||C-1, YS-11P*||Miho, Tottori|
Special Airlift Group
|701st Sqn||B.747-400||Chitose, Hokkaido|
|Flight Check Group||U-125, YS-11FC||Iruma, Saitama|
|(*) 403rd Sqn due to receive its first C-2 by end March 2017.|
One of the pair of Boeing 747-400s used by the 701st Squadron to transport imperial and prime ministerial entourages on visits throughout the world. Having been formally commissioned
in June 1993, the unit commemorated its 20th anniversary in 2013. (Photo: JASDF)
(Above) While a sister aircraft undergoes maintenance, a C-130H Hercules of the 401st Sqn, 1st Tactical Airlift Group (TAG) comes to the end of its landing run at Komaki AB in October 2000. Nowadays, some of the unit’s aircraft sport a blue colour scheme, as seen below on one of the three aircraft that
participated in the 2013 SDF Review flypast.
The Raytheon (Beechcraft) T-400 has been used in the multi-engine training role by the
41st Flight Training Squadron since February 1994.
(Above) Two of the three YS-11FCs operated by the Flight Check Group, two of which were
converted from YS-11P transports. (Below) Seen departing from Tsuiki AB, Fukuoka Prefecture,
is one of three U-125s specifically acquired configured for the group’s role. Tragically, the crew
flying this very aircraft was lost in what was confirmed to have been a controlled flight into
terrain incident near JMSDF Kanoya AB on April 6, 2016.
AIR TRAINING COMMAND (HQ: Hamamatsu, Shizuoka)
|1st Air Wing||31st Training Sqn||T-4||Hamamatsu|
|32nd Training Sqn|
|4th Air Wing||11th Sqn (Blue Impulse)||T-4||Matsushima, Miyagi
(See note below)
|21st Fighter Training Sqn||F-2B|
|11th Flight Training Wing||1st Sqn||T-7||Shizuhama, Shizuoka|
|12th Flight Training Wing||1st Flight Training Sqn||T-7||Hofu-Kita, Yamaguchi|
|2nd Flight Training Sqn|
|13th Flight Training Wing||1st Flight Training Sqn||T-4||Ashiya, Fukuoka|
|2nd Flight Training Sqn|
|Air Training Group||23rd Sqn||F-15J/DJ, T-4||Nyutabaru, Miyazaki|
|1st Technical School||F-2A, F-4EJKai, F-15J, T-4, T-7||Hamamatsu|
Matsushima was extensively damaged by the tsunami on March 11, 2011. Away from base that day, the Blue Impulse aerobatic team was stationed at Ashiya, Fukuoka Prefecture, for two years and returned to Matsushima on March 30, 2013. Due to tsunami damage sustained by its aircraft and the base closure, the 21st Sqn conducted reduced F-2 flight training operations from Misawa, Aomori Prefecture, from April 2011. A ceremony marking the 21st’s return to Matsushima was held on March 28, 2016.
Three of the JASDF’s six-aircraft Blue Impulse aerobatic display team go through their routine at the
2013 Iruma air show. There were media reports that the team was planning to revert to coloured smoke
to mark its 20th anniversary season in 2016.
AIR DEVELOPMENT AND TEST COMMAND (HQ: Fuchu, Tokyo)
|Air Development and Test Wing (AD&TW)||F-2A/B, F-4EJ/F-4EJKai, F-15J/DJ,
C-1FTB,T-4, X-2, XC-2
The Air Development and Test Command HQ was relocated from Iruma, Saitama,
in March 2014.
The two XC-2s are assigned to the Test Research Development Institute (TRDI),
Japan Ministry of Defense.